Bloomberg News

Leap Wireless Says It Hired Former FTC Head Muris in AT&T Review

October 21, 2011

Oct. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Leap Wireless International Inc. said it hired Timothy Muris, a former antitrust regulator, to represent it in the Federal Communications Commission’s consideration of AT&T Inc.’s proposed purchase of T-Mobile USA Inc.

Muris, a former head of the Federal Trade Commission who is of counsel at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in Washington, was among lawyers signing acknowledgements of confidentiality, Leap said in a filing posted yesterday on the FCC’s website.

AT&T, based in Dallas, has approached smaller rivals, including Leap and MetroPCS Communications Inc., about their buying spectrum and subscribers as part of an effort to save the merger from government opposition, people familiar with the matter said last month.

The U.S. Justice Department sued on Aug. 31 to stop the $39 billion deal as anticompetitive, and the FCC is still reviewing the transaction.

Muris’s practice focuses on antitrust including mergers, according to a biography on the Kirkland & Ellis website. He was chairman of the trade commission from 2001 to 2004 under Republican President George W. Bush. Muris didn’t immediately return a telephone call seeking comment on his work for Leap.

Leap on May 31 asked the FCC to reject the merger, saying it would concentrate market power. San Diego-based Leap, a pay- as-you-go provider that offers service under the Cricket brand, had 5.7 million subscribers in the second quarter, when AT&T had 98.6 million, according to Bloomberg data.

--Editors: Fred Strasser, Andrew Dunn

To contact the reporter on this story: Todd Shields in Washington at tshields3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Shepard at mshepard7@bloomberg.net; Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.


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